Gibbons P.C. Achieves Mansfield Certification as Part of Its Commitment to Diverse Leadership
October 10, 2023
Gibbons P.C. is pleased to announce it has achieved Mansfield Certification status for 2022-2023. This distinguished designation in the legal field, which acknowledges Gibbons’s commitment to ensuring all firm attorneys and employees have a fair and equal opportunity to advance into leadership, comes after the firm completed a year-long, rigorous process involving data collection, the meeting of numerous reporting milestones, and other activities focused on the path to leadership at Gibbons. The firm is among 175 large-size law firms in the United States and Canada to become Mansfield-certified this year.
Launched in 2017 by Diversity Lab, “an incubator for innovative ideas and solutions that boost diversity and inclusion in law,” the Mansfield Certification has since expanded its parameters, with input from an advisory board of diversity leaders to develop a data-driven approach. Mansfield’s methodology, which has proven to build more diverse leadership teams, is rooted in changes to systems and processes, not exclusivity or discrimination. Mansfield ensures that opportunities for advancement are inclusive by broadening talent pools instead of instilling quotas, set-asides, or requirements unrelated to an individual’s qualifications.
The 2022-2023 certification required firms to consider historically underrepresented lawyers – women lawyers, racial and ethnic minority lawyers, LGBTQ+ lawyers, and lawyers with disabilities – for at least 30 percent of available roles when appointing, electing, or promoting attorneys into leadership positions and equity partnership, and to further consider similarly underrepresented talent for 30 percent of all C-suite roles.
As Diversity Lab noted to Gibbons, “We greatly appreciate the hard work and dedication you and others in your firm have invested in this initiative and your strong, demonstrable commitment to moving the needle on diversity in law firm leadership.” Diversity Lab also praised Gibbons and its fellow participants for enhancing transparency related to leadership roles and advancement processes.
Kristin D. Sostowski, a Director in Gibbons’s Employment & Labor Law Group and past President of the National Association of Women Lawyers, serves as the firm’s “Mansfield Partner Champion,” described by Diversity Lab as an influential senior partner “who has in-depth knowledge of the firm’s talent practices, is involved in decision-making related to the Mansfield Rule categories, and can educate the partnership about the Mansfield Rule to ensure strong leadership engagement.” She chairs Gibbons’s Mansfield Working Group, which also includes Kelly Ann Bird, Director, Employment & Labor Law; Anne M. Collart, Director, White Collar & Investigations; Hayley C. Conklin, Deputy Executive Director and Interim Chief Human Resources Officer; Jennifer A. Hradil, Vice Chair, Business & Commercial Litigation (BCL); June M. Inderwies, Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer; Kate E. Janukowicz, Director, BCL and Director, Professional Development, Retention, and Associate Recruitment; Robert Johnson, Director, Corporate and Chief Diversity Officer; Joshua S. Levy, Director, BCL; Michael J. Lubben, Director, Corporate; Bisola A. Taiwo, Director, Real Property; and Peter J. Torcicollo, Managing Director.
“We are thrilled to achieve 2022-2023 Mansfield Certification and are already looking ahead to 2023-2024,” said Ms. Sostowski. “This designation is consistent with the firm’s longstanding commitment to increasing the representation of diverse attorneys. Our Mansfield Working Group – as well as numerous Gibbons employees across the firm – contributed to this tremendous effort and are to be commended for their diligence and dedication over the past year. We look forward to continuing our efforts and collaborating with Diversity Lab to promote diverse leadership at Gibbons and in the legal profession more broadly.”
In addition to participating in Mansfield, Gibbons supports diversity at all firm levels through such longstanding and successful programs as the Gibbons Diversity Initiative and Gibbons Women’s Initiative.
“Achieving Mansfield Certification as part of the 2022-2023 cohort has been an extremely worthwhile experience ─ one that has enabled us to not only cultivate a diverse workforce, but also collaborate meaningfully with our peers,” remarked Peter J. Torcicollo, Managing Director.
“We applaud our Mansfield team on leading the firm to certification,” added Patrick C. Dunican Jr., Executive Chairperson. “Their work and the firm’s accomplishment indicate we are successfully building on our policies and processes to further diversity among our leadership.”